Bowling Green traveled to Atlanta to take on Georgia Tech on Saturday afternoon, picking up their first-ever win vs. an ACC opponent and the Mid-American Conference’s fourth win against a Power Five opponent in 2023. Here’s a brief rundown of what happened:
- After the Yellow Jackets returned the opening kickoff to near midfield, QB Haynes King threw a 53-yard touchdown pass to Eric Singleton, Jr. to open the scoring at 7-0 after the PAT.
- BG was able to move the ball past midfield after a horse collar tackle penalty, but would have to punt it away.
- Haynes King would then proceed to go 4-of-4 on his next drive, throwing a touchdown pass to Christian Leary to make it 14-0 just 5:20 into the game.
- Camden Orth came into the game after Connor Bazelak marched the Falcons down to the Georgia Tech 16-yard line, scoring a one-yard run to put the Falcons on the board. Alan Anaya would convert the PAT, and the score would be 14-7.
- Anaya trotted back on once again to convert a 40-yard field goal to make the score 14-10 with 8:27 to go in the first half.
- Finn Hogan would recover a Georgia Tech fumble on special teams, and complete the ensuing drive on the receiving end of a Connor Bazelak passing touchdown from 14 yards out to give the Falcons a 17-14 lead.
- The defense would hold on after an intentional grounding penalty on the Yellow Jackets, and the Falcons would go into the locker room up 17-14.
- On the first drive of the second half, the Falcons marched right down the field, and Bazelak took it in himself with a 1-yard rush TD. That would make the score 24-14 BGSU after the PAT.
- After a Georgia Tech turnover on downs, the Falcons marched back down the field yet again, with Terion Stewart punching it in for a 31-14 lead with 3:13 to go in the third quarter.
- The defense would get in on the fun just three plays later, as defensive back Deshawn Jones, Jr. recorded a pick-six to increase the lead to 38-14 in favor of the Falcons.
- Haynes King would finally stop the bleeding with a touchdown throw to Malik Rutherford, cutting the deficit to 38-20. The two-point conversion failed, keeping the margin at 18.
- Georgia Tech would get a last-ditch touchdown pass from Haynes King to Abdul Janneh with 1:35 to go, narrowing the gap to 38-27 after the PAT.
- With no timeouts for Georgia Tech, Bowling Green would kneel out the clock to secure the historic win, moving to 2-3 (0-1 MAC) on the season. Georgia Tech fell to 2-3 (1-1 ACC).
Let’s take a look at some takeaways for the Falcons:
Former Indiana quarterback Connor Bazelak certainly a better performance than a week ago, finishing 21-of-32 passing for 263 yards, with two total touchdowns (one pass, one rush.) Camden Orth provided a big spark to start the scoring for Falcons with his rushing touchdown in the first quarter.
The rushing attack ran for 175 yards in the game. Terion Stewart ran for 138 of those yards and ran for a touchdown. The good news is that Falcons have surpassed their rushing touchdown total from a year ago with Stewart’s touchdown from this game.
Wide receiver Finn Hogan had an incredible breakout game. The former Central Michigan Chippewa had six receptions for 102 yards, and one ridiculous touchdown catch.
The offensive line looked really good today. Not much pressure was applied on Bazelak, and the line only gave up two sacks.
The defense held Georgia Tech, a Power Five unit, to a lovely 69 rushing yards. The defense allowed 417 yards total, which is fine considering Haynes King ranked in the top 20 in passing yards (349 today).
With two interceptions today, the Falcons have five interceptions against their Power Five opponents this season. Deshawn Jones, Jr. had a pick six for BG’s last score, the fifth pick of his career. Jordan Oladokun hauled in his second interception of the year, as well.
The Falcons racked up three sacks from Chace Davis, Adrian Wilson and Billie Roberts.
Special teams were able to jump on a fumble that led to the Falcons taking the lead at 17-14. Alan Anaya was perfect (5-of-5) on extra points, and nailed a 40-yard field goal in hostile territory. Jackson Kleather and Sami Sir shared punting duties. While only punting three times, they averaged 42 yards per punt.
The Falcons still racked up a lot of penalties, finishing with 10 penalties for 113 yards. On a normal day, this would not be a good focus point, but the Falcons were able to gain quite a few of those yards back, which is something we haven’t seen many times in the Loeffler era of BGSU football.
It’s also noted that BG had 25:30 more possession time than Georgia Tech.
The Falcons did have a slow start, but they figured it out and looked very impressive. The one big question is, “Where was this team last week?” How do you go from losing 38-7 on homecoming, to beating a Power Five team 38-27?
Just a strange season thus far.
Plays of the Game
The biggest play of the game was this absolutely phenomenal catch from BG receiver Finn Hogan. We’ll just let the video do the talking. (Credit: @MACSports/X)
We have to add Camden Orth’s touchdown in here, too. He was essentially stopped in his tracks, but found enough strength to get into the end zone. (Credit: @MACSports/X)
BGSU will now set up to take on Miami on the road in conference play, with the contest scheduled for next Saturday at 3:30 p.m. Eastern.